Through the Bible Day by Day
O Israel, return unto the LORD thy God; for thou hast fallen by thine iniquity.
“I WILL HEAL THEIR BACKSLIDING”
The prophet here ransacks the world of nature for phrases sufficiently expressive of his transports of joy. The whole world seems laid under contribution to set forth the love of God. The gentle dew, the rich raiment of the lily, the far-reaching spurs and roots of the Lebanon range, the spreading branches of the olive, the fragrant breath of the wind which is laden with the perfume of the land, the golden corn ripe for the sickle, the scent of the vines-these are the images with which the inspired imagination of the prophet teems.
But how deeply the chapter appeals to us! The very words that returning prodigals would adopt are set down. As we return, we hear the divine voice assuring us that our backslidings shall be healed, that there is no anger and only love, and that God Himself shall be the sap of our fruit-bearing life. Our Father wants it to be clearly understood that these promises do not belong to Israel only but to all who will accept them.